Jasper Conservation Connection
The Jasper Conservation Connection (JCC) is a non-profit group that was created to enhance the quality of parks, recreational opportunities, conservation value, and outdoor education throughout Jasper County. Goals of JCC include promoting conservation programs, building partnerships, and preserving and enhancing our local natural resources.
The group is a nonprofit, charitable organization developed under the umbrella of the Jasper Community Foundation. The group is able to manage donations, memorials, and fundraising dollars. The Conservation Board is very excited to have this group established. The Jasper Conservation Connection (PDF) provides funds to help carry out the Conservation Board's mission to improve quality of life through programs of conservation and education.
Collaborating with Local Groups
The Jasper Conservation Connection was established in June 2005 and has since worked in cooperation with several local groups such as the Emerson Hough Chapter of the Izaak Walton League, Rock Creek Ikettes, Tallgrass Audubon Society, Pheasants Forever, and Grinnell College, to create successful fundraising events as well as implement numerous park improvements.
In a partnership with the P.I. Foundation, the “Off the Beaten Path” 6K trail race (PDF) and 3K fun run (PDF) was created at Jacob Krumm Nature Preserve and has become extremely successful in providing recreational and environmental education opportunities for people of all walks of life. A Boy Scout led Halloween Hike has also become a tradition at Mariposa Park, not only acting as a fundraiser for the Jasper Conservation Connection, but also as a learning opportunity for all involved. In addition, the group has completed the construction of a family sized cook grill at Ashton Wildwood Park, purchased and installed a handicapped accessible fishing dock at Mariposa, and has worked with the Iowa Department of Natural Resources and Alliant Energy to organize a fundraising tree sale.
Most recently, the Jasper Conservation Connection constructed an observation tower and bird blind at Jacob Krumm Nature Preserve. The structure overlooks the wetland, prairie, and savannah and is designed to be large enough for a class of 40 students, allowing for the study of several ecosystems at once. A bird blind located beneath the tower provides opportunity for observation and photography of wildlife in the wetland area. As an enhancement to the tower, Jasper Conservation Connection and Grinnell College Center for Prairie Studies have partnered to purchase a binocular that will be permanently located on the tower.
For additional information about the JCC or if you are interested in becoming involved with any of their current projects or upcoming events, please contact Keri Van Zante.